Determining materiality is key for an organisations sustainability and strategy! The ability to depict the ways in which relevance and content intersect is a vital step to achieving a smart, sustainable and inclusive growth that combines long-term profitability with social justice and environmental care. A materiality assessment provides crucial support in doing just that.
Materiality aims to identify issues that have direct or indirect impact on an organization’s ability to create, preserve or erode economic, environmental and social value for itself, its stakeholders and society at large.
What is a materiality analysis?
In short, it is about setting priorities right. The process of labeling material topics in a company requires a comprehensive framework that methodologically identifies and prioritizes issues and opportunities alike. By engaging all relevant stakeholders such as customers, suppliers, civil society and policy makers, materiality helps to align a business strategy with an organisation’s risks and external interests while achieving larger impacts in sustainability.
The benefits that come with identifying material issues enhance companies’ accountability for their impacts and contributions and therefore build trust, facilitating the sharing of values for a more cohesive society. A materiality analysis enables external stakeholders to understand companies’ true value, and tangible and intangible assets, providing a critical source of information for relevant communities and stakeholders.
How do we handle that?
The key to getting real value out of any materiality assessment is starting with a clear understanding of what information you are looking for. This enables you to ask the right questions, choose the right stakeholders, apply the appropriate methodology and visually present the information effectively to help inform decisions. Generally, materiality varies considerably from organisation to organisation. As a result, the evaluation of materiality is constantly evolving and requires developed methodologies and tools to consolidate the process of identifying materiality.
Schuttelaar & Partners facilitates the entire process and minimizes its complexity. Our materiality analysis helps you to identify critical social, environmental and economic issues, which may have a significant impact on your organisation's performance. The outcome is an overview of essential topics: The materiality matrix. Based on these insights we develop an impactful strategy and profound communication tailored to each organisation’s individual needs.